Obama`s visit extension of his predecessors` steps: Jaswant

Underlining that Indo-US ties go way back in history, former External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh today said US President Barack Obama`s visit was simply an extension of those of his two immediate predecessors.

Last Updated: Nov 13, 2010, 21:32 PM IST

New Delhi: Underlining that Indo-US ties go
way back in history, former External Affairs Minister Jaswant
Singh today said US President Barack Obama`s visit was simply
an extension of those of his two immediate predecessors.

Singh, who was speaking in a round table talk on `Obama:
over-stretched US and under-stretched India`, said though
Indo-US relations go back way in history, it was the essence
of the visit of former (US) Presidents Bill Clinton and George
Bush that essentially shaped up Obama`s maiden visit.

"The past two Presidents had paved way for discussions on
issues like military collaboration, strategic partnership and
other critical issues between India and United States. This
continued on and off but there were other global developments
that has made this relationship even more meaningful," he
said.

Remarking on the topic of discussion, the former External
Affairs Minister said that over the past decade and half, US
has been overstretched due to (issues concerning) Iraq and
Afghanistan, while also perpetually being aware of a "rising
China".

"One can say that US has been overstretched not only
because of its dwindling economy but also because of issues
pertaining to Iraq and Afghanistan. His constant indirect
reference to China is another indication that US is worried of
its rise and the western nation must further forge its
relationship with China`s most-powerful neighbour - India."

On India being "under-stretched", Singh said that the
nation has several challenges before it ranging from poverty,
governance, corruption to its relations with Pakistan and yet
its entire potential was yet to be stretched.

PTI